Monday, April 19, 2010

Global Warming

Since almost everyone has decided that global warming is not real, I have decided to be the devil’s advocate. I am going to show you that warming is indeed happening right now and that a huge chunk of it is anthropogenic.

First, the overall trend shows that the temperatures are increasing. But wait a minute, Nick. Doesn’t the fact that we got some flurries a couple times after February prove that global warming isn’t real? No. The last 12 or so years have been the warmest years that have ever been recorded. 1998 was the warmest year we’ve ever had, and although it was an El Nino year, it was the warmest El Nino year we ever had. In fact, 2005’s temperature rivaled 1998’s even though 2005 was not an El Nino year. Even if 2010 turns out to be slightly cooler than 2009, there is enough evidence to show that the general trend is increasing temperatures.

Also, the glaciers seem to be an indicator of the warming issue. Glaciers are rapidly shrinking in places such as New Zealand, Switzerland, and Norway. It is true that there has been an increase in glaciers in some parts of the globe. However, those result in local cooling and precipitation, and there is an overall trend of declining glaciers. Compared to the Arctic sea ice cover recorded by satellites in 1979, the current ice cover is 20% lower. Scientific data shows that over the past 30 years, the global temperature has increased by about .2 degrees Celsius.

Okay. Maybe the earth is warming up. But that’s not a big issue. It’s the earth’s natural cycle of warming. The earth has its warm times and has cool times. That’s a pretty true statement that the earth is constantly changing, yet people have definitely contributed to global warming. The rate at which the earth is heating up is not natural. Also, keep in mind that the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere now is the greatest it has been for 650,000 years.

Almost no one can think of a better explanation of the earth’s atmospheric conditions than the greenhouse effect. In fact, skeptical scientists often agree with the greenhouse effect. However, they choose to ignore it since the model shows that increased fossil fuel consumption would cause global warming. These skeptics try to poke holes in the model and sometimes do manage to point out a small irregularity. However, while the model is not perfect, these skeptics cannot think of a better way to explain the earth’s conditions.

While we are on the topic of these skeptics, we must examine their work. Much of the work for global warming has been published in scientific journals, while the skeptic’s work is published outside of these journals. What’s the difference? For a scientist’s work to be published in a journal, it must go through many levels of peer review. In fact, it often takes several years before something is given the okay to be published. The amount of scrutiny in peer reviews is nothing to sneeze at.

Also, there is a large scientific consensus that global warming is real and anthropogenic. 97% of climate scientists agree that temperatures have increased, and 80% of all American climate scientists believe that it is human-caused.

Finally, there are some of you who are willing to blame volcanoes and water instead of yourselves. People create about 25 gigatons of greenhouse gases every year. If you find a year that had the most volcanic activity, the amount of greenhouse gases emitted by volcanoes would be about .1 gigaton. As for the water vapor, it is already incorporated in the climate scientists’ models of global warming. They realize that water vapor is indeed a greenhouse gas, and therefore, is just one more reason why we have to be careful about our CO2 output.

Many of you point to some climate scientists and cry out that they have a hidden political agenda. It’s hard to believe that we actually read the same passage for the timed writing. Also, I don’t even need to talk about the possibility of skeptics’ agendas as well. Some of you say that we should not be listening to Gore since he’s just a bitter loser. Not everyone who believes that climate change is real is a follower of Gore. There are many other climate scientists that make their case quite well. Do not confuse what I am doing with something else. Who knows, I might really be the so called devil’s advocate. I am not, however, Gore’s advocate.


  1. I agree with Nick in most of this article. He used facts and scientific eevidence to support his statements and I like the fact that he chose a side that was less supported by the other members in the class. Nick also blends in some humor with truth which makes the article easier to read and makes the reader want to support the authors point. The fact that the temperatures are increasing across the globe is partly human caused and that lies under the category of global warming. Not everyone should hate Al Gore just because he presented an idea of concern. Also, the ending of this article makes the reader want to read more by saying I might really be called the so called devil's advocate, not Gore's advocate.

  2. I must say that i agree with pretty much everything you said. It amazes that there is always a small isolated group of people who chose to oppose all reason and logic and adopt a viewpoint just so they can contradict science. It is true that global warming hasn't been proven but neither has gravity or evolution. ( we all know gravity is there but its just a theory). Even though it cant be proven for certain i feel as if the public should trust these scientists and start realizing that global warming is a real threat- becuase right now no one cares.

  3. I commend you Nick for your audacity in choosing to argue for global warming. Moreover, I am surprised that you decided to find actual facts rather than attacking global warming with anger like I did! I agree with your statements and defenses for the theory of global warming, but it is undeniable that NASA made up global warming. They announced that they needed additional funding and as a result they came up with global warming. The world is getting hotter, but not dangerously hot. I thought Nick hit the nail on the head when he spoke about Al Gore. Democrats don't even like him! It was a clever way to end Nick's essay. Regardless, Nick did an admirable job in refuting everyone else's criticisms.